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Ballyprior Beg, County Antrim


Ir. Baile Prióra Beag ‘townland of the priory (little)’


Ballyprior Beg is contiguous with Ballyprior More and the two were likely one townland that has been split. The historical forms Kilprioragh (1608, 1621, 1633) feature the Irish element cill ‘church’, which is the form which most frequently appears in Irish place-names. Cill has a range of associated meanings; ‘church, monastic settlement or foundation, churchyard, graveyard’ (Flanagan & Flanagan 1994, 49). These townlands were the location of the very ancient monastery of Ballyprior (Balprior) and its associated graveyard. Among those interred in the graveyard are Martin O’Brolchain, Professor of Divinity in the abbey of Armagh who died in 1188 (OSM 10, 43).


Additional Information

Historical name form

Old FormRef. DateReference
Ballyprior magna1542Mon. Hib. 13
Ballyprior parva1542Mon. Hib. 13
Ballyprioragh1605Inq. Ant. (DK) 50
Ballyprioragh1605Inq. Ant. (DK) 50
Kilprioragh1608CPR Jas I 122a
Balleprior-magna1614Mon. Hib. 13
Balleprior-parva1614Mon. Hib. 13
Ballypriormagna1621Inq. Ult. (Antrim) Jac.I $7
Ballypriorparva1621Inq. Ult. (Antrim) Jac.I $7
Kilprioragh1621CPR Jas I 524a
Ballyprior al. Kilprioragh1633Regal Visit. (Reeves TCD) ?
Belipreor-mor1659cCensus 1659 9
Ballyprior al. Ilamagee1661Trien. Visit. (Bramhall) ?
Ballyprearbeg1669HMR Ant. 42
Ballyprearmore1669HMR Ant. 43
B:pryor1780Lendrick Map
""i.e. Little Prior''stown or Priorstown (little)1832cJ O'D (OSNB) A17 A198
Baile-Phrír ""the town of Prior, a family name""1913Joyce iii 116
~Baile Prioir ""Prior''stown"A17 A198J O'D (OSNB)
Belfast Lower
Island Magee
Parish in 1851
Island Magee
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